Who has the right to be accommodated?


The duty to accommodate is usually thought of in terms of disability, but it relates to a broad range of individual differences among workers.

Individuals or groups who are protected under human rights legislation have the right to accommodation. While the federal, provincial and territorial human rights legislation cite varying prohibited grounds, it is best to check the legislation that applies to your workplace. The following grounds exist in most Acts and Codes:

  • Race or colour;

  • Religion or creed;

  • Age;

  • Sex or gender;

  • Marital Status;

  • Physical\Non-physical disability;

  • Sexual orientation;

  • National or ethnic origin;

  • Family status;

  • Ancestry or place of origin and

  • Addictions such as alcohol or drugs.

Some jurisdictions such as the North West Territories have included gender identity and social condition as a prohibited ground of discrimination.

The Employment Equity Act also requires employers to be proactive in identifying and eliminating employment barriers against persons in the four “designated groups”: women, “visible minorities” or racialized people, people with disabilities and Aboriginal Peoples 

September 18, 2013